Library Catalog - Kentucky Historical Society

Archive Record

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Collection Churchill Weavers Collection
Catalog Number 2007.45.Box 31-108
Object Name Sample, Material
Other number 1928-23
Creator Churchill Weavers
Other Creators Churchill Weavers staff
Walter McCook, Philadelphia, PA.
Date 1928
Scope & Content Box 31-108 contains 29 textile samples, which include: 1 yarn sample, 1 sales sample swatch book, and 27 material samples. The samples represent border patterns in the form of small and large scraps and color blankets. One sample is a length of French spun wool from Walter McCook, Philadephia, PA. The border samples and many of the stripes in the textiles are woven in tight plain weave structures with some featuring overshot patterns in x-shaped designs. Other overshot patterns include chariot wheels, Georgian flower, and windflower. Materials used are wool, cotton, and linen. Included are paper notes referencing Mary Cummings. Cloth numbers 32 and 65 are present. Most samples have cardboard products or labels attached.
System of arrangement The Sample Collection is organized into various 'series.' The term series may have been applied to this collection when Churchill Weavers hired an archivist in 2002 to process its archive. A copy of the Guide to the Weaving Archive produced by Virginia Daley, project archivist, accompanies the collection. This guide indicates that the bulk of the textile samples are arranged into the following series: Year-Box Series, Cloth Number Series, Early Style Number Series and Master Sample Series. The original arrangement of the boxes was kept during the processing of the weaving samples at the Kentucky Historical Society. The original Churchill Weavers numbers are written on the box labels along with the new box numbers.
The Cloth Number Series was the earliest form of numbering weaving fabrics. Woven fabrics were assigned cloth numbers regardless of the final product (yardage, throws, scarves, etc.) In the early cloth number scheme, different cloth numbers would be assigned to exact fabric that different only in color. Later, single cloth numbers reflect not only a wide range of variant patterns and colors but also variations in the weave caused by different yarns. These Cloth Numbers run from 1 up to 399. The cloth/style number scheme runs from about 400 to 999. These early style numbers reflect a number assigned to a final product and often refer to the cloth number as the type of fabric used.
Around 1933 Churchill Weavers started a coded style number scheme to indicate the type of product, the year created, and the number of products in that line. The coded system is the primary organizing principle behind the Master Sample Series. Churchill Weavers began with four digit style numbers and then later incorporated five digits to clarify the dating on items produced. The first digit in the style number identifies the type of product, 1xxxx refers to scarves, 2xxxx bags, 3xxxx baby blankets, 4xxxx throws, 5xxxx stoles, 6xxxx yardage, 7xxxx cravats, 8xxxx ready-to-wear, and 9xxxx is linens. The date can be determined by the second and third digits. If the number is 35476, the baby blanket was designed in 1954. The last digit identifies the number within that product line, i.e. the baby blanket was 76th in that 1954 line. Experimentals in the collection incorporate a letter as the second digit, for example, 3D59. This can be confusing as experimentals through to 1938, x0xx, have a '0' in the second digit.
The second largest series is the Year-Box Series, which is arranged chronologically by year and there under by box number. The format is like 1932-5. The sequence of boxes within a specific year generally reflects the style numbering sequence, i.e. the scarves (1xxx) will be in the earlier boxes and the cravat yardage (7xxx) will be in the latter boxes of any given year.
In each series, there are boxes labeled as "Outside Purchases" and "Unidentified" objects. Materials of a particular product type, for example, outside purchased scarves, are grouped under the 1xxxxs series of scarves. Outside Purchases refer to items not made by Churchill Weavers, but were acquired because of their similarity or "potential applicability to Churchill lines." Unidentified items are items that Ms. Daley could not find style numbers for during her archival project.

People Bellando, Lila
Bellando, Richard
Churchill, David Carroll
Churchill, Eleanor Franzen
Subjects Samples
Textile art
Textile industry
Textiles
Weaving
Search Terms Appalachian Region
Berea (Ky.)
Churchill Weavers
Madison County (Ky.)